Archive for April 16th, 2007

My Top 25

It’s become a yearly tradition on the fragrance board of Makeupalley to conduct the Top 25 Favorite Perfumes survey. I didn’t participate this year, and to make up for my negligence I’ll list them here (good excuse!) Lists are never fun when it comes to perfume for there’s no way I can ever limit myself to a meager quantity of 25. Neither am I willing to provide any sort of ranking for my fragrant soul is ever so capricious. Here goes, in no particular order, my top 25 as of today, Tuesday, April 17, 2007 (I feel like I should add the time but I’ll refrain):

  1. Guet-Apens/Attrape Coeur by Guerlain
  2. Metallica/Metalys by Guerlain
  3. Bois d’Armenie by Guerlain
  4. Apres l’Ondee by Guerlain
  5. Eau Noire by Christian Dior
  6. Bois d’Argent by Christian Dior
  7. Diorama by Christian Dior
  8. Miss Dior (in parfum) by Christian Dior
  9. Muscs Koublai Khan by Serge Lutens
  10. Messe de Minuit by Etro
  11. 31 Rue Cambon by Chanel
  12. No 22 by Chanel
  13. Coco (in parfum) by Chanel
  14. Coromandel by Chanel
  15. Cuir Ottoman by Parfum d’Empire
  16. Lipstick Rose by Frederic Malle
  17. Iris Poudre by Frederic Malle
  18. Orchidee Blanche by L’Artisan Parfumeur
  19. Songes by Annick Goutal
  20. Le Jasmin by Annick Goutal
  21. Bvlgari Black
  22. Doblis by Hermes
  23. Enlevement au Serail (FK #3) by Parfums MDCI
  24. L’Air de Rien by Miller Harris
  25. Angelique Encens by Creed

P.S. Shame on me for not having reviewed all of them yet. This will be remedied in the near future.

20 comments April 16th, 2007

New York Sniffage Report

Seems like ages since I’ve written here but what can you do, when work sends you to New York with plenty of free time to sniff, your priorities change drastically (plus I had no internet access). But I’m glad to be back and report on my fragrant adventures. The first time I traveled to New York was about three and a half years ago when I had barely started out in my perfume addiction. I was thrilled to visit the fancy perfume shops but was also highly intimidated by the abundance of scents I knew nothing of, so the result was quite lamentable – I barely sniffed anything and bought nothing (the fact of accidentally kicking a dog in a shop didn’t help either). Many a times since I’ve looked upon that adventure with piercing regret – ah, if only I had savored the experience! That’s what you do when you find yourself surrounded by the multitude of perfumes – you savor and partake. This time around, I did just that.

My first fragrant stop was Aedes de Venustas, a posh boutique in West Village that’s an absolute must for any self-respecting perfume aficionado. I could literally spend hours in that store (it was close to two this time). Besides charming and very knowledgeable owners, the selection of niche/hard-to-find scents is simply incredible. Having previously smelled a lot of what the shop offers, I must say I didn’t so much discover as rediscover – Musk by Lorenzo Villoresi (powdered rose musk), Bursch by Acqua di Biella (warm, boozy spices), and, new to me, Yu, the $5,000 perfume that smells gorgeous and very much along the lines of Gardenia by Chanel.

Bergdorf Goodman required a couple visits. The beauty and fragrance department is one of the best around. My first point of attraction was obviously Guerlain. Iris Ganache, while a bit weaker now, is still a lemming. From the one drop I was able to spray it was a lovely mix of Cuir Beluga and Insolence. The Garden Ouds I whimpered about earlier are a disgrace to the house of Guerlain. Not only there isn’t anything remotely oud-like about them but the utter flat character is inexcusable, especially for such a hefty price. Thankfully, there was one fragrance I fell for upon first sniff – Mayotte, the reissue of Mahora, with a couple distinct changes (a separate review to come soon). Another magnetic appeal at Bergdorf’s was the new Tom Ford scents. I must say the appeal waned the minute I found myself standing in front of the display table – 12 scents in identical bottles with lots of similar sounding names (there’re lots of “noirs” and “blacks”), all smelling suspiciously like clones or distant relatives of Black Orchid. Frankly, I was overwhelmed. I started picking them up, one by one, and spraying on a card, only to discover one heavy smell after another, with not much identity or charm. But I won’t judge them yet as I still hope to obtain samples to conduct further thorough testing. What I found deplorable, however, was the presentation – way too many perfumes, way too alike, with nothing to back them up (what’s behind the name, for instance?) The conclusion: exclusivity doesn’t equal mastery.

My other stops were Barney’s and Takashimaya, neither of which had any substantial thrill (although still worth visiting). A real highlight, however, was the L’Artisan Parfumeur boutique on Madison Ave. It was my first time visiting the boutique, and I fell all over in love with the line. The perfumes are neatly and tastefully arranged on the shelves for you to interact with, the staff is ever so smiley and helpful (and French!), the whole atmosphere is just charming. I fell in love with the Mood Swings coffret again as well as the new Jatamansi organic body care products (I hear the body mist is due to be released in May).

Pardon my eloquence today – too many fragrant impressions at once. That’s what four days in New York would do to you. Ah, I want to go back already.

26 comments April 16th, 2007


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